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Havre speech and debate competes at state


January 29, 2018

Press release

A young Havre High School speech and debate team saw some success at the Class A state tournament in Corvallis over the weekend, but not enough to bring home any state medals or trophies.

“I had great hopes to have somebody up on stage receiving a medal this weekend, we certainly had people with the skill and talent to do so, but it wasn’t in the cards this year,” head speech and debate coach Tim Leeds said. “With almost all of the Havre speakers competing in their first year, it was a tough road, and they did well, but just missed breaking into the top eight.

“With another year’s experience, I am sure these kids will be earning some medals for Havre at next year’s tournament,” Leeds added.

Havre’s students faced speakers from all of the Class A competitors in Corvallis. Students in every event had to place in the top 12 at the two superdivisionals held the week before, in Ronan for the Northwest and Southern divisions and Sidney for the Central and Eastern divisions.

First-year competitor Jordan Jarman went the furthest for Havre, breaking into semifinals in impromptu speaking. Jordan received good marks in her round — including being ranked third and fourth by two of the judges — but just missed making it into finals and ended in 11th place.

Two other first-year speakers, Barrett Kilgore in dramatic oral interpretation of literature and Alex Barkus in informative speaking, also received good marks in the guaranteed preliminary rounds in their events, but just missed breaking into semifinals, each by one point. Barkus and Kilgore each ended up ranked 17th in their events.

Havre’s debaters each won one round in tough debates against top-level competition, ending 1-4 in the final tally. That included Havre’s only returning competitor to state, Lincoln-Douglas debater Kaleb Gardner, and first-year speakers Eric Harrison and Xavier Ulano and Tony Antley and Sydney Scheresky-O’Neil, Havre’s two public forum debate teams that qualified for state, and team policy debaters Hailey Azure and Noah Teasley.

Havre’s other first-year speakers who qualified for state also received some good marks in their rounds and helpful comments from judges, but did not break into semifinals. Those were Niko Fialkosky in extemporaneous speaking and Mackenzie Parrotte in impromptu speaking.

The team wraps up its season Feb. 9-10 in Helena with the qualifier tournament for the National Speech and Debate Association National Tournament, which will be held in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, this year in June.


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